Kevin Robinson at the blog Chicagoist was curious about a commenter who sounded suspiciously on-message on some recent Walmart posts. Walmart wants to come into Chicago, and Walmart’s opponents are fighting the retailer at the community level to prevent that. In return, a pro-Walmart community group has formed called “Our Community, Your Choice” that argues, “Everyone else but Chatham and the South Side are making the decisions – It’s OUR CHOICE, NOT THEIRS.”
Last week AT&T, in yet another of a string of PR failures about the health of its network, made things even worse by publicly blaming its customers for, you know, being customers. Over the weekend, though, a new thread was introduced into the narrative: it’s the iPhone’s fault. Not because it’s too popular, which has been the old complaint, but because the hardware doesn’t work right, and AT&T can’t say anything about it for fear that Steve Jobs will reach down through the clouds and smite them.
That sounds pretty tragic and sad for AT&T, but the problem is nobody knows if it’s true, or if this is yet another strategy to shift the responsibility from AT&T.
Front groups for cable and satellite companies pretending to represent the interest of sports fans? Mysterious “sources” and leaks? This is nothing new to Consumerist readers, but our estranged siblings at Deadspin have some great information on a lobbying and PR war between thinly disguised groups working on behalf of DirectTV and the big cable companies, and their battle over fans and fees. Or is it?
TD Bank sent us the following statement – UPDATE: and now a new, revised one – about all the transaction and fee snafus that happened this week after they became one with the Commerce Bank customer data:
A post on Amazon’s Kindle support forum yesterday says the company is sending out emails with offers of $30 to customers who had their George Orwell purchases erased from their devices earlier this summer.
Harry McCracken at Technologizer gathered a bunch of old press releases from technology companies and retailers and annotated them based on what we now know.
Last week, reader Brianna contacted Consumerist about her issues with the defective packaging of a Benefit Cosmetics products, as well as the treatment she received from their e-mail customer service rep. Benefit saw our post, and their PR department responded to Brianna’s story.
…both incidents occurred when flights with different destinations were loaded simultaneously from the same doorway and that “miscommunication among staff members resulted in the child being boarded on the wrong aircraft.”
Puerto Rico and other U.S. Territories are in sort of an awkward place. Are they part of America, or not? Sure, they can’t vote in presidential elections, but they are on the back of a quarter. This confusion has led to problems for Netflix users in Puerto Rico. Netflix will provide them with DVDs-by-mail service at the same price as service in the 48 contiguous United States, but considerably slower. However, they won’t let Puerto Rico customers stream movies over the Internet, which would be handy while they wait three or four days for their DVDs to show up.
Credit card reform is bad, says the American Bankers Association, an industry trade group. The ABA sent a letter around to Senators on Tuesday warning against credit card reform. They say that new regulation will mean credit card companies will have to cut off credit to some consumers completely “when they need it most.”
Here’s the clip of Consumerist on Nightline last night talking about the nasty Domino’s videos. Check out the Ogilvy & Mather offices to see how the elite spin doctors monitor the internet – with hi-tech tag clouds! And a graph that charts the number of twitter, blog, and media mentions! Fancy. They point to the chart and say that because the spike went down the incident is somehow over and the pizza company won after they started responding. What doesn’t show up on that chart is two friends driving by a Domino’s this weekend and one says to the other, hey dude, how about some booger pizza?
Visa has removed Heartland Payment Systems and RBS WorldPay, the two huge payment processors that suffered recent data breaches, from its list of companies that are in compliance with Payment Card Industry (PCI) rules. It says they can get back on the list when they recertify that they have proper security in place. While this may sound like a significant change in the status of the companies, in reality it does little to change how the three companies do business with each other or with merchants. It’s just a way for Visa to protect itself from any upcoming lawsuits by banks and credit unions against the payment processors.
So blogger Jason Roe finds what he thinks is an error on the RyanAir site that would let you buy airfare from the zero-frills a-la-carte Irish airline for free. An employee decided t make nasty comments in Jason’s comments section, calling him “idiot and a liar!” and saying that he probably can’t get a date. Which was not that surprising. Nor was it surprising that a RyanAir PR rep responded to the situation. What was surprising was that the PR rep sided with the commenter and heaped further abuse on the blogger!
A Muzak PR rep would like you to know that their filing for Chapter 11 status is just so they can reorganize their debts and that they and their creditors expect Muzak to be in business for years to come (yay?). Also that they mainly sell music by original artists to retail stores (read: cleaned up for mass market appeal but tailored specifically to the stores’ demo), as opposed to the elevator music their company name became synonymous with. For a more in-depth look, The New Yorker did an interesting feature on them back in 2006, in which we learn the company HQ has a fantastic sound system that goes to even their parking lot, but, “for deeply felt symbolic reasons,” not their elevator.
Cash4Gold has decided to counter a mounting stream of criticism – a Yahoo! tech article, a Red Tapes Chronicle MSNBC article, posts at Cockeyed and an insider confession at Complaintsboard – by putting up a series of debunking posts on their blog. I don’t know about you but the more four-syllable words a questionable company uses and the more their pronouncements sound like an Intro to Rhetoric term paper, the more I trust them. [cash4gold.blogspot.com] (Thanks to Merck23!)
Comcast is giving a $10 service credit to every Tucson customer whose Super Bowl viewing was interrupted by a porno snippet, but you have to call in. The number to call is 1-888-315-8219. A thorough system review indicated there was no technical glitch, “suggesting someone deliberately seeking to interrupt the broadcast rather than a technical glitch,” wrote WSJ. US Attorney General spokesman Wyn Hornbuckle said, “We take this matter seriously.” The pancake pupcake pile said, “You can call me nanerpus, nanerpus.”